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Special Events

The Special Event stars in Texas

The Lone Star state welcomed a new star--The Special Event 2006, held in Dallas Jan. 10-13. The event was produced by Prism Business Exhibitions and sponsored by Special Events Magazine.

Along with a bustling trade show floor offering products and services including decor, tabletop items, furniture, linen and special effects, The Special Event featured a slate of seminars for attendees covering topics in business development, design, foodservice, event management, rental, and sales and marketing.

Highlights of the event included the Welcome Party at famed Gilley's, where guests could sample dishes from NACE member caterers while practicing their Electric Slide and patting armadillos.

At the Opening General Session, keynote presenter Mike Rayburn ( urged attendees to ask "what if?" and "why not?" so they could break out of old modes of thinking.

Also at the session, Special Events editor Lisa Hurley announced the winners of the annual Tabletop Gallery competition. These are "Contrasting Elements" from Ducky-Bob's Party & Tent Rentals, Carrollton, Texas, in the category "Tabletops Under $1,000 Each" and "Moroccan Nights" from Design Group, Minneapolis, in the category "Tabletops $1,000 and Above." Ten outstanding tabletops were on display on the trade show floor for attendees to admire.

The Theme Lunch, held on Jan. 11, offered an upscale "tailgate party" at Gerald Ford Stadium at SMU, including a performance by the Dallas Cowboys cheerleaders. The "ArtRageous" Opening Night Party, held that night, offered a dramatic interpretation of environments at the Texas State Fairgrounds.

Wedding planners from throughout the world swooned at the sight of dramatic floral, embellished linen and elegant tabletops at the annual Wedding Luncheon, one of the highlights of Jan. 12. Held at stately Arlington Hall at Lee Park, the Wedding Lunch melded displays of the latest trends in bridal design along with a heart-warming display of the wedding gowns of the mothers of the event production team.

Women took another lead role the next day at the Leadership Brunch, held at the Women's Museum, where Special Events publisher Lisa Perrin was honored with the Steve Kemble Leadership Foundation award in recognition of her more than 20 years of leadership in special events.

The Special Event culminated Friday in the Gala Awards and Celebration at the Adam's Mark Hotel. (See the story below for the list of Gala winners.)

A complete wrap of the show will appear in the March issue of Special Events.

For more information about The Special Event, visit

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